I know it's been asked a thousand times, sometimes even exactly as I've phrased it. But the truth is, I've read through many, many posts that start like this and haven't really found what I'm looking for. So here goes my attempt:
I'm completely new to riding - no dirt bikes or anything with a motor (though I am pretty skilled with a bicycle
). I'll be taking the MSF course ahead of next season, and believe it or not, I'm even building myself a full size "mini" bike to play with in the interim (call me crazy...). And though my ultimate aspiration is to get onto a middleweight sport bike like the 848, I'm obviously going to have to start out on something tame first. The most obvious and logical choice would be something like a Ninja 250/500 - and even though the new 250 is a decent looking bike, the allure of a Ducati is extremely hard for me to resist. I've got my eye on the 620, as most accounts indicate that it's an acceptable bike to start on and I've been able to source them in an affordable price range around here. Should be a no-brainer, right?
Wrong. Most non-Ducatistas I've spoken with advise against
starting on a Ducati - even a smaller, cheaper one - because of the whole "you're guaranteed to drop it" thing, and the "prohibitive" repair costs vs a budget starter bike. I don't like to hear it, but it makes sense. However, the part that disturbs me more is the bit where people say I'll learn more or learn faster on a 250, etc, because it handles "better"... I can deal with the excessive cost of parts - you've got to pay Ducati to play Ducati, right? - but as someone with aspirations to ride and race sport bikes at the track, I don't really want to limit myself in terms of learning how to ride right. And so, it would seem the dowdy, generic starter bike is the real
But this is where I get stuck every time: My head knows the generic starter bike is a better choice for what I want to do - it's cheaper to acquire, cheaper to own, and arguably easier to ride fast. But my heart refuses to let me settle on something other than a Ducati, because everything else just doesn't have that Ducati allure. Call it squid-ish if you will, but I do place importance on the appeal of a motorcycle. So here's what I'm getting at: We know the 620 is a fine bike to start on, but how does it stack up against something like a Ninja 250 when it comes to really
learning how to ride, particularly with respect to track riding and racing? Will sacrificing a little of that last degree of performance to appease my heart's calling for a Ducati come back to bite me when I eventually switch over to a full-on sport bike?
Thanks for your time.